The Japanese government will urge businesses to raise wages as it did last year, in a bid to spur recovery after the economy sank into recession following the consumption tax hike in April, economic and fiscal policy minister Akira Amari said Monday.
Noting that the government will hold a meeting with representatives of business and labor circles on Wednesday, Amari said in his e-mail magazine, “I believe the management side will show a positive view (to our request).”
“We have to move toward raising wages in real terms, which means that take-home pay will increase even after deducting (the impact of) high prices,” he said.
Government data released Monday showed the Japanese economy contracted a real annualized 1.6 percent in the third quarter, after shrinking 7.3 percent in the second quarter, in a sign that the country’s economy has slipped into recession.
Speaking at a press conference in Nagoya the same day, Japan Business Federation Chairman Sadayuki Sakakibara expressed his willingness to cooperate with the government to put the economy on a recovery track.
“It is desirable that businesses expand their earnings, and seek to expand job opportunities and raise wages,” said Sakakibara, the head of the most powerful business lobby in Japan known as Keidanren.